If you thought you were getting things at Walmart for low prices before, wait until you find out about Walmart's Hidden Clearance.
What Is the "Walmart Hidden Clearance?"
Walmart's "hidden clearance" refers to items that are priced differently (usually lower) online than they are in stores. Kind of like the deals you might find at a Walmart Clearance outlet, but online.
This can be because of an error, regionality or just a delay in updating the price stickers to match the pricing set online.
Walmart has a price match guarantee, and that extends to their website. If we find items priced lower on their website, we can show this to the cashier or customer service representative and get the price adjusted at checkout!
Now, don't jump off this page just yet! There are still some things you need to know to take advantage of these deals.
How to Find Walmart Hidden Clearance Items
Here's how to find Walmart Hidden Clearance items in 2023. If you've already been doing this, I have good news. It hasn't changed much! The only real differences will be some minor changes in the price matching policy.
The process is straightforward. All you'll need to do have to find hidden clearance items at Walmart is the free Walmart mobile app.
It's available for Android and iOS.
You will need a smartphone with a camera for this process. The camera will work as your barcode scanner.
You can create a user account (recommended) or use the app as a guest.
The first time you use the app, you'll need to give it access to use your camera.
Once you've installed the mobile app on your smartphone, head into a Walmart store and look for the general clearance rack or a clearance end cap. Here's what the clearance end cap for toys looks like in my neck of the woods.
There should be at least one aisle of items that are all on clearance.
Pick an item and from your Walmart app, open the barcode scanner.
Hover the scanner over the Walmart price tag. It is easy to distinguish from any other barcodes or labels on an item. If there isn't a price tag, scan the products UPC code.
You'll see something that looks like this.
You will see prices for "at this store" and "sold online by Walmart."
We're looking to see if either of these is lower than the price we are seeing in stores.
If the price shown on the app in the "in store" area is lower, congrats! You found a hidden clearance item. Most likely, someone forgot to update the Walmart identifying tag.
Before you celebrate, we can go even further. Click on the "Online" tab to see if there is an even lower price. If there is DOUBLE CONGRATS! You found an even better discount.
With all of that in mind, the item above was a winner!
I kept going and scanned what looked like another winner at first.
The item above had potential, but there was one problem. There are some stipulations on what we can and can't price match. I'll cover those in deeper detail shortly.
The issue with this one was that the item was out of stock online.
How to Redeem Price Walmart Matches
This part will feel a little unofficial, but it's normal. You just tell the person at the register when you check out.
"I found this on the Walmart app lower. Can you price match it for me?"
If you have multiple items, take screenshots on your device to have them to show at the register. There is no guarantee that they will price match multiple items for you, but don't let that stop you from trying to redeem as many as possible.
Restrictions on Walmart's Price Match Policy (In Store)
Before you bring your items up to the register to have your prices matched, you'll need to ensure none of the following restrictions apply.
Rule #1 The Item Must Be in Stock at Walmart.com
The item must be in stock at Walmart.com for Walmart to match the price in person. It doesn't matter that it was priced lower, all that matters is if it is still priced lower online.
Rule #2 The Item Must be Sold by Walmart.com and NOT 3rd Party Sellers (or Anyone Else)
This is the part that will trip many of you up. Walmart.com works similar to Amazon FBA in that they have a 3rd party seller program. The Walmart fulfillment program allows other companies to sell products on Walmart, so just because something is sold on Walmart.com does NOT mean it qualifies for a price match.
This also means that they will not price match local retailers. For example, you won't get a discount because Home Depot has the same item for less. We refer to when that was possible as "the good ol' days" now.
Rule #3 The Item Must Be Identical
The item must be identical to the item shown on Walmart.com in every way. This includes size, model, quantity, brand, or color, etc.
Walmart Online Price Matching
This article has focused on Walmart's physical locations, but we can also price match items online. The restrictions are different, though.
Walmart price matching is NOT the same online and in person. There are some important differences.
Walmart In Person
Matches Walmart.com Only
Matches 28 Online Retailers
Limit Varies by Store
Limit Is One Per Day
Items Must Be in Stock on Walmart.Com
Items Must Be in Stock on 3rd Party Marketplace
Can Leverage In Store Lower Pricing Errors
In Store Pricing Is Not Matched
Walmart will price match online competitors BUT not in person. If you take an item to the checkout and say, "I found this for $10 less on Amazon.com. Can you match it for me?" they will tell you no.
You can get deals on Walmart.com items if you find them at lower prices than the following online retailers:
Just like with Walmart.com price matching in the store, Walmart will NOT match 3rd party marketplace sellers. This is relevant mostly to Amazon.com.
For example, an Amazon FBA seller cannot be used for your price match, but Amazon.com can.
Items should say "Ships from Amazon.com" and "Sold by Amazon.com."
This is easy to get confused since about 44% of Amazon's sales are from 3rd party sellers.
See the example below to better understand what this looks like.
Remember, these are ONLY matched when buying online. They will not match online retailer prices in person.
Another thing to keep in mind is that Walmart will not price match for prices that are on special events or part of a promotion. This is including but not limited to bundles, cash back, rebates, mail-in offers, clearance, rollback, Black Friday or Cyber Monday deals, offers advertised as a percentage or flat amount off, or any other limited-time promotions. Essentially, they will match everyday prices from other 3rd party online retailers, but nothing that is a temporary promotion.
Also, price match is not available in Alaska, Hawaii, or Puerto Rico.
And, biggest buzz kill of all, you're restricted to one price match online per day 🙁
Additional Walmart Hidden Clearance Tips
Here are some final, parting tips before you go out and hit WallyWorld on your own.
- Most Walmart deals take place within the first 5 days of the month. If you want to get the best clearance deals, try to show up then.
- Walmart hidden clearance is not limited to clearance items. You can find hidden deals on any item sold at Walmart.
- If you find multiple items and need them price matched, take screenshots of the app on your phone of each for proof of pricing so you don't forget. They may still require that you verify a live version of the website to prove that the price is current and still valid.
- Be nice. Most employees will understand how price matching works, but don't lose your cool if they don't. Just ask for a supervisor before you go full, Ken or Karen, on anyone.
- The items might show the lower price at checkout. You can wait until the item has been scanned to mention the price match to ensure.
How Can You Profit from Walmart's Hidden Clearance?
Finding deals is awesome, but so is making money selling the things you find! You can do this with a process called retail arbitrage.
The concept is easy to understand. You buy items from one retailer and sell them at a higher price on another retailer.
My favorite method involves buying items from places like Walmart and then selling them back on Amazon.com. Amazon has by far the best fulfillment program, so we can ship our items to them in bulk and they will ship them individually as customers buy them.
I recommend reading the blog posts below next if you're interested in doing this.
- Amazon Retail Arbitrage: Make Money Shopping Your Favorite Retail Stores [2023 FAQs]
- Amazon FBA Explained in Under 2 Minutes
- Amazon Product Sourcing Checklist
Thanks for reading and good luck!